It’s time to shift gears from league to League Cup, though the pressure isn’t really decreasing since we’re talking semifinals and we’re talking Spurs. It’s the first leg of this (for some reason still) two-legged affair, with the second leg to follow next week.
We’ve used the previous rounds of this competition to rest and rotate and even hand out three debuts in the previous round, but Academy Day might have to wait until the weekend this time, when we welcome non-league opposition to Stamford Bridge in the FA Cup third round.
For this one, we should have Romelu Lukaku back, with Timo Werner also continuing to work his way back towards match fitness. We do of course have a new injury concern as well, with Trevoh Chalobah leaving Sunday’s game early with a suspected hamstring injury. Andreas Christensen and Ruben Loftus-Cheek had been ruled out for that one, with youngsters Lewis Hall and Harvey Vale helping to make up numbers on the bench.
And Édouard Mendy’s off to the Africa Cup of Nations for the next month.